State Aid Review

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State Aid to Public Libraries Task Force 2008

Based on the 2008 Opinion Survey comments, the Board of Library Commissioners appointed a task force of three commissioners [Commissioner Quinn, Commissioner Murphy, and Commissioner Carol] and three staff members [Rob Maier, Dianne Carty, and James Lonergan]. This group was charged with meeting to pull together items from the proposal of the committee and the current state aid program.

A flow chart represents the work of this group. Aspects of the current program where changes are recommended are highlighted in color.

The primary recommended changes are:

State Aid to Public Libraries 2008 Opinion Survey Results

2008 Opinion Survey of the State Aid to Public Libraries Program 

State Aid Review Committee 2006-2007

State Aid Review Committee: Additional Information Survey for FY2007


At the August 2004 Board meeting in Canton, the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners first discussed moving forward with a Strategic Planning process. Subsequent discussions took place at the January 2005 Board meeting.

At the April 2005 Board meeting the strategic planning process was approved to proceed in three phases: (1) defining and selecting key issues, (2) developing specific goals and objectives for the key issues, and (3) implementing the goals and objectives.

At the December 2005 Board meeting a summary description of each key issue was presented. The State Aid key issue was reported as follows: "This key issue includes all of the factors that go into 'State Aid' funding and its process. Multiple comments were received about the desirability of reviewing the current minimum requirements and waiver process. However, many people also believed that the time has come for a general review of the State Aid process and suggested a 'starting from scratch' approach to define a next generation State Aid program rather than tweaking the existing program (since that has proved difficult in the past). Suggestions included a 3-tier approach that may make the current State Aid process more understandable and workable. This included programs best summarized as 'Libraries in Need' (for those libraries who need help to meet whatever standards are in place), 'Libraries Meeting the Minimum Standards', and 'Libraries Far Exceeding the Minimum Standards' (related to the previous work done on the 'Beyond the Basics' program)."

Committee Charge, Timeline and Appointees Approved

On June 1, 2006, The Board of Library Commissioners approved the charge, time-line and composition of the State Aid Review committee.

The committee will assess the role of a state aid program in improving library services through review of the current state aid program and review of approaches in other states, and will develop a next generation program for recommendation to the Board of Library Commissioners.


June 2006 Approval of committee charge and time-line
July/August 2006 Appointment of committee members
September 8, 2006 Minutes, Committee Charter
October 11, 2006 Minutes, Purposes of State Aid, Subcommittee Structure, State Aid in the U.S.
October 31, 2006 Minutes, Glossary,Subcommittee Groups,Technology Overview, Timeline
November 20, 2006 Minutes, History of Municipal Appropriation Requirement Formulas, Schedule of Meetings, Strategic Planning Report
December 6, 2006 Minutes, Local Funding Requirement Group - Local Budget Scenario, Local Funding Requirement Group - State Per-Capita Scenario
January 8, 2007 Minutes, Municipal Appropriation 'Per Capita' Subcommittee Report
January 29, 2007 Minutes, Local Funding Subcommittee (Power Point presentation), State Aid Values Statements (with comments)
February 7, 2007 Minutes
March 8, 2007 Minutes, Communities in Need Program with Chart, Points for Library Service, Requirements and Maintenance of Effort (Power Point presentation)
March 22, 2007 Minutes, Communities in Need (Power Point presentation), Agreements to Date, New State Aid to Public Libraries Program, Points for Library Service
April 26, 2007 Minutes, Communities in Need, Diagrams - Communities in Need, New State Aid to Public Libraries Program
June 29, 2007 Minutes
July 12, 2007 Final report to Board
August 6,7,9, 2007 Summary Report of Focus Groups

On July 13 and August 3, 2006, the following appointments to the State Aid Review Committee were approved by the Board:

Public Library Directors (15):
Emily Bader, Director, Springfield (Western Region, 2004 population 152,091); Ellie Chesebrough, Director, Sturbridge (Central Region, 2004 population 8,692); Janice Coduri, Director, Wellesley (Metrowest Region, 2004 population 26,515); Diane Giarrusso, Director, Boxford (Northeast Region, 2004 population 8,221); Penny Johnson, Director, Worcester (Central Region, 2004 population 175,966); BWS Johnson, Director, Hinsdale (Western Region, 2004 population 1,825); Patricia Lambert, Director, Dedham (Metrowest Region, 2004 population 23,225); Joanne Lamothe, Director, Weymouth (Southeast Region, 2004 population 54,202); Denis Lesieur, Director, Lenox (Western Region, 2004 population 5,162); Bernie Margolis, Director, Boston (Boston Region, 2004 population 569,165); Krista McLeod, Director, Metheun (Northeast Region, 2004 population 44,845); Joseph Mule, Director, Lancaster (Central Region, 2004 population 6,719); (Nancy Rea, Director, Haverhill (Northeast Region, 2004 population 60,482)- left committee due to new position); Suzanne Teuteberg, Director, Brewster (Southeast Region, 2004 population 10,368); Elaine Winquist, Director, Duxbury (Southeast Region, 2004 population 14,691).

Public Library Trustees (5):
Bonnie Burnham, Northampton (Western Region, 2004 population 28,930); Andre Mayer, Cambridge (Metrowest Region, 2004 population 100,771); Frank Murphy, Arlington (Metrowest Region, 2004 population 41,546); James Matarazzo, Winthrop (Northeast Region, 2004 population 17,461); Vanessa Verkade, Kingston (Southeast Region, 2004 population 12,345).

Regional and Network Administrators (2):
Susan McAlister, Minuteman Library Network, Executive Director; John Ramsay, Western Massachusetts Regional Library System Administrator.

Public Library Friends and Advocates (up to 2):
Vivian Spiro, Chair, Bd of Directors of the Associates of Boston Public Library; John Arnold (as of 12/29/06)

MBLC Commissioners (3):
Em Claire Knowles, Chair, MBLC; John Arnold (term expired 12/29/06); Ed Bertorelli; Irving Zangwill (appointed by the Board on 1/4/07 to fill John Arnold's slot).

MBLC Staff (3):
Robert Maier, Director, MBLC; Dianne Carty, Head of State Aid and Data Coordination; James Lonergan, State Aid Specialist.

For more information, please contact Dianne Carty at x222

Page last updated on 07/1/2015